In 2014, Colorado state law changed to provide a formula to help judges presiding over a divorce to determine spousal maintenance, spousal support or alimony as it is commonly known. While many people have opinions on what spousal support should (or should not) be, The Colorado Springs Gazette explains that “[t]hese guidelines aren't intended to equalize income for the two households after divorce but to have them with comparable means.” With this in mind, for anyone whose marriage is on the rocks, it is worth learning more about this formula and how it could affect the future without a spouse.
According to The Denver Post, Colorado’s new law is part of a nationwide movement toward spousal maintenance formulas. The Post explains that this formula, while only a guideline for the judges, applies to marriages where the combined income is less than $240,000 and lasted between three and 20 years. The formula consists of taking 40 percent from the spouse who earns more and then subtracting half of what the lower earning spouse makes from that 40 percent. So if one spouse makes an annual income of $100,000 and the other earns $50,000, the formula would award $15,000 annually to the lower earner ($40,000 - $25,000) for a certain period of time.